Much to the consternation of LGBT advocates and the liberal media, President Donald Trump did away with a rather progressive rule regarding transgenderism imposed on the military by former President Barack Obama, and Trump did it, of course, via Twitter. In the Twitter post, Trump announced that, henceforth, transgender individuals would no longer be permitted to serve in the U.S. military “in any capacity,” which of course sparked massive outrage among his ideological opponents.
But the Independent Journal Review figured that, since this ban on transgender people in the military will pretty much only affect the military, maybe we should see what actual members of the military think about it instead of asking political advocates and talking heads in the liberal media. It was an eye-opening move.
“Only two things matter: Survivability and lethality,” stated Army Sgt. Darian Browning, who served in the 82nd Airborne. “Anything other than that is a distraction. We have budget problems, also, already.
“The stated purpose of the Army is to ‘fight and win the Nation’s land wars,’” added Browning. “Any decisions or budget fixes should be centered around that and that alone.”
“The military is a machine that doesn’t breakdown for politics,” said Marine Sgt. Sean Conner, Iraq veteran and MARSOC Raider. “I can assure you that the reasoning for this decision is for the benefit of the whole system.”
“Considering less than 1 percent identify as transgender in the military, it would be a major burden, and the cost benefit analysis would be in the favor of not allowing this policy to go through,” Conner continued. “The amount of change, cost and redirection would not outweigh the very small pros, if any.”
“The military had it right before with Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, or else things get complicated real quick,” he added. “The rules were there before Trump came around and for good reason. I empathize if they want to serve, but just do it without having to announce your sexual orientation — it’s pretty simple.”
Connor also noted that service members undergoing hormone therapy or sex-change operations are not permitted to work full duty or be deployed, sometimes up to two years, essentially rendering them a waste of time, training, resources and taxpayer money.
Marine Staff Sgt. Josh Ghering, a veteran of both Afghanistan and Iraq and a former drill instructor, seemed to agree with that last bit pointed out by Conner about transitioning troops being removed from the routine all others must endure.
“We need to be focused on how to improve our warfighting ability, period,” he said.
“If transgendered individuals are being taken out for these procedures and treatments, they are not being trained properly,” he continued. “Before we go to war, we train for over a year on ranges and with regimen after regimen. So then we take these individuals out of training to get their surgery. But what good are they if we are over in a war zone and they aren’t able to contribute to the fight because they’re going through therapy or recovering from said surgery?”
He added that “the military is not a social experiment. Its objective is to fight wars. That’s where its sole focus should be.”
“I believe that the infantry and combat arms should stay male. (male: being born with male genitalia),” stated wounded Iraq veteran and Army Sgt. Jay Strobino. “In the military, your roles, positions and tasks are very clear and outlined. And I have nothing against transgendered people or homosexuals, but it’ll start confusing those roles.”
“It’s not the ability so much of the individual, because yes there are plenty of females that can out lift me, out run me and so on,” explained Strobino. “But it’s a lower average as a whole, just due to body limitations. And you can’t have two sets of standards for the same group. It just won’t work.”
Strobino asserted that lowering standards to accommodate those with lesser abilities would be worse than having two sets of standards.
“If you’re under the standard then you either train and improve, or you’re not in combat arms,” he said. “There’s no middle ground.”
However, while most of those questioned by the Independent Journal Review supported the policy change in principle, there was at least one who disagreed with it and another who generally supported the idea, but questioned the manner in which it was rolled out.
“I don’t like that he just ran with it. He should have had a policy ready to go and Mattis should have rolled it out,” stated Army sniper Gregory Diacogiannis, an Iraq War veteran.
“The military is here to destroy the enemy. It’s not a social experiment. We shouldn’t be using the military as a petri dish to push progressive ideas,” he continued. “They are a killing machine. People are denied service for all kinds of reasons. Why should we treat people with gender dysphoria differently?”
Diacogiannis maintained that such individuals are in need of help and the military is not the place for them to receive such help, nor would it help the military, and noted that treating people differently or having differing sets of standards would be detrimental to overall morale.
“You will ‘other’ them because they will become a protected class. In combat everyone is equal, it doesn’t matter if you are black, white, gay, straight, man, or woman,” he explained. “But if you let other people live by a different standard you crush morale. Also, we are talking about 0.1 percent of the population not being able to serve.”
Finally, the lone voice of disagreement found by IJR was Afghanistan veteran and Army Ranger Zac Oja, who stated, “I’m curious to see how this will be implemented. Will the openly transgendered individuals currently serving be forced out of the military? Will they be forced to ‘identify’ with what their birth certificate says for gender?
“This, in my opinion, is going to do nothing markedly positive but will open the flood gate to the left for open dissent against this new policy,” he added.
Oja suggested that more time should have been given for further study of the costs/benefits of transgender service members openly serving in the military, in order to gain a better overall understanding of the matter.
“I will say that I have heard nothing but good things from dear friends that have served with openly transgender soldiers,” added Oja.
The media most likely want nothing more than a division’s worth of soldiers vehemently castigating the president and calling this latest policy shift nothing short of horrible, but that is not what they are going to find, at least not with this batch of troops.
To be sure, there will be a handful like Oja who may disagree with the premise, or others, like Diacogiannis who disliked the manner in which it was introduced, but by and large, most members of the military are sure to be at least quietly supportive of the change. They know that the military is not the realm for progressive social engineering and tinkering, but instead is supposed to be a finely tuned killing machine that wastes no time or energy on anything else.